A North Carolina 17-month-old is recovering after a freak traumatic head injury that shocked the country. According to multiple national news reports, the young child was sitting in his high chair in his home when he reached for a sippy cup and fell backwards off of a porch and onto the end of a power washer. The metal rod of the power washer became lodged three inches into the little boy’s head.

Luckily, the boy’s uncle, Carlton Reed, was on the scene of the head injury accident and knew what – and what not – to do. Reed understood not to move the boy and to call for help immediately. A neighbor and local firefighter sawed through the pressure washer to detach the boy from the machine without moving him. The boy, who was conscious and crying throughout the ordeal, was rushed to the University of North Carolina Hospital, where he underwent a delicate surgery to remove the pipe. Doctors say that if the pipe was in even a slightly different spot, severing his torcula vein, he could have died instantly or suffered a debilitating stroke.

While doctors at the UNC hospital were first unsure of the little boy’s chances of survival – and told grandfather Joseph Jones that things weren’t looking good – a week out of surgery, Jessiah is recovering quickly and may not even have lasting consequences from his brain injury. Doctors are still monitoring him for an infection, but say that his response has been the best possible outcome.